You are about to purchase one of the biggest investments in your life. Going forward without a bit of knowledge can cost you money and cause frustrating delays. One of the keys to a successful transaction is understanding the home buying process. There’s much to know, but these six steps will get you started in the right direction.
Step 1 – Check Your Credit Score
Due to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, you can order a free copy of your credit report from Equifax, TransUnion, and Experian once a year. Check the reports for errors and delinquent accounts. Report errors and create a plan to pay off delinquent accounts. Lenders use your score and the information on the report to get an accurate picture of your stability and reliability. In the months before and during the home buying process, don’t make expensive purchases that require monthly payments. Added debt will change your debt to income ratio. If you’re considering a career change, consider a delay until after you buy your new home.
Step 2 – Increase Your Savings for Buying a Home
Most people find that getting a home mortgage loan is the best choice for the purchase of a home. Even with this loan, there are other expenses to consider. Additional costs include the down payment, closing costs, and moving expenses. Down payments are around 20 percent of the selling price. Closing costs are up to eight percent. Being short on cash will delay your transaction.
Step 3 – Choose a Real Estate Agent
Your real estate agent is valuable when it comes to managing the home buying process on your behalf. They handle paperwork, answer questions, narrow down your search, and negotiate with the seller. Find an agent who listens to your needs, communicates at the highest level and provides a positive experience. Straight answers save you time and money.
Step 4 – Apply for Home Mortgage Pre-Approval
Dreaming of a new home with all the amenities you could ever want is fun, but the reality is often more down-to-earth. Don’t set your sights on a home outside of your budget. Applying for a home mortgage loan is an excellent way to see how much you can afford. Searching within a target price range saves time and frustration. When it comes to offers, your pre-approval sends a message to the seller that you are serious about buying and can follow through to the end.
Step 5 – Place an Offer on the Home
Impress the seller with your offer, but be cautious about overpaying. The right offer increases your chance of success, especially if other people are interested in the property. Your offer should stand out above the rest. Trust your real estate agent to provide helpful advice on creating the right offer. Their experience and knowledge can contribute to building one that catches the sellers attention.
Step 6 – Reach Closing Day
The seller accepts your offer, and the home buying process proceeds to the next stage. The lender will schedule an appraisal and inspections. Once the investigations are complete, and everything is in order, you will arrive at closing day. Celebrate this day! You sign any required paperwork, pay all fees, and collect the keys to your new home.
Your real estate agent is the best source of information about the local community and real estate topics. Give the Maria Thorn Team a call today at 225-933-9542 to learn more about local areas, discuss selling a house, or tour available homes for sale.